Sunday, May 13, 2007


(June 28, 2007)
I can't bloody believe it.

Mrs. Valenzuela, the lady who manages the landlord's properties, told me that we shouldn't move out, that she'd work something out with us.

Apparently there are five families that have just picked up and left the building this month. And other buildings the landlord owns have been worse for attrition. Lots of people moving in with family, whether that family is in Alaska, Alabama, Mexico City, or Managua. I was completely unaware of this. Shows you what being distracted with other things can do. So yeah, the landlord wants to keep as many of us here as possible. Also, the price of storage spaces has skyrocketed for some reason. Evidently we aren't the only people who needed to stow stuff before moving.

So yeah, this is the deal. Our rent will go down. We can lock our stuff up in a security building. We keep our apartment for now. Basically all we're going to do is unplug all the electrical stuff, secure the computers on floor level, clean out the fridge, turn off the gas, lock up (very important!) and leave the place almost as-is. Oh yeah, foodstuffs get cleaned out too. Don't want this to turn into a cockroach banquet.

We are going to be moving into a tent city at City of Hope. The cottages and the trailers are being given to the people who are in worse shape. Helford Research Hospital is completely full, and some of the old wings in the 1951-era building are being pressed back into service to house patients...again, patients who are in worse shape than Richie is.

I guess when oil prices leap one whole dollar in one whole week, things change. $6.25 at the 76 station at Roscoe and Woodman today. Last week it was only (only!) $5.50.

I bought a USB modem at the Apple Store today. I have converted my DSL account to a dialup account so I can preserve my online identity. Shouts out to DSL Extreme. Great ISP. Good people. My mobile phone is now our home phone. All the bills and my school stuff are going to be sent to my uncle, and he's going to put them in a big manila envelope and mail them to City of Hope, to our new mailbox there. One thing won't go there, and that's voting stuff. One of the perks of this arrangement is that I don't lose my address. If this crazy stuff continues, I'll just figure out some way of getting to my polling place. Or go permanent absentee voter. I don't trust those damn touch-screen DRE machines so I'm not going to vote that way.

This is making me very melancholy. I like my neighborhood. I'm going to miss it.

This is what being a refugee feels like.

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